What Is Anonymous Browsing? Do I Need A Private Browser?
Summary: This 2-3 minute blog describes how you may “cloak” your web browsing activities, thereby securing your private data. Contact GEEKAID Computer and Network Support, the IT experts, at https://www.geek-aid.com/ to find out the browser protection options available for you or your SMB.
Web browsing and hiking share one top-line result: a trail is always left behind. When you browse the web, various digital traces are always left behind. Some of those traces could indicate the activities you’ve done while browsing, what you’ve purchased, your email address and possibly the email address you’ve used while logged on.
With the ever-increasing number of connected devices worldwide, hackers are constantly finding new ways to exploit user browsing vulnerabilities to breach data and compromise your privacy. The good news is that there are many robust ways to browse securely and anonymously.
Private browsing, or incognito browsing, is merely the automatic deletion of browser history and cookies after every web browsing session. However, Anonymous web browsing hides your IP address and location, making it much more difficult for you to be tracked by cyber thieves. Nevertheless, skilled hackers can track your IP address and location, your various consumer accounts, bank info, browsing activities, the devices you’re using and many other aspects of your online privacy. Fortunately, there are several cyber security methods available for protecting your privacy while browsing:
Virtual Private Networks (VPNs) - A VPN is an anonymous network within your network. Here's how it works:
- First, your Internet data is encrypted and sent to a VPN server.
- Your IP address, identity, and location are instantly hidden by the VPN server and replaced by a VPN IP address that might be located in another city or another country.
- Upon receiving your data traffic, the VPN server further encrypts your data, creating a secure and practically invisible virtual private network.
- Whether you work at home, in a train station, airport or on a mountaintop, anywhere you can get a WiFi signal, VPNs can hide your online activities by logging in to a secure Virtual Private Network. A VPN affords you your own private "internet tunnel," allowing you to access your private network safely and incognito. All data traffic is encrypted when sent and decrypted when received. As a result, cybercriminals who try to break into your VPN connection will not be able to decipher the data and will only see gibberish.
Proxy Servers – Proxy servers offer similar IP address protections as VPNs. However, unlike VPNs, proxy servers do not encrypt the data transmitted and, therefore, still leave your online information at risk.
Private Browsers – Google Chrome allows for confidential searches on google. However, it only affords users limited privacy in “incognito mode” and captures vast amounts of your browsing data. However, there are browsers other than Chrome that collect as little data as possible about users. Also, advanced private browsers route data traffic through multiple servers and encrypt data, much like a VPN does.
Anonymous Search Engines – Numerous search engines are now available that claim to not store personal information, block ads from tracking your online activities, and offer encryption and warnings before opening a malicious or untrusted website.
Privacy-centric Browser Extensions – Developers have designed many browser extensions that afford extra cyber security. VPN browser extensions, anti-tracking tools and many other options are available to help secure your online experience.
Customized Browser Settings – Within browser settings, you can find functions that allow you to limit the data collected while web browsing. For example, you can turn off the setting for tracking location data. Also, you can turn off cookie tracking to minimize outside data traffic monitoring. However, VPNs offer a more robust layer of cyber security.
Deploy Multiple Layers of Security – There is no entirely secure web browsing method. Also, cybercriminals are constantly finding new ways to breach online privacy. Therefore, employing many layers of cyber security is prudent to achieve the best protection possible. Finally, to be sure that your browser, network and all your devices have sufficient security, it is always wise to consult IT experts.
Home and SMB Cyber Security Services
Unfortunately, many individuals and small to midsized business users are under the misconception that off-the-shelf virus protection is enough. Whether you work from a company office or remotely from home, you might not be aware of all the new threats to your computer, network and other devices without the assistance of a professional IT Consulting Service. IT professionals can assess your specific cyber security needs and all aspects of your computer systems and networks, recommend solutions and keep your system running smoothly from the start. A modest investment in professional IT assistance is a smart way to protect your private data and get the most out of computers, networks, mobile devices and all your online activities freeing up your time to concentrate on more substantial business or personal tasks.
GEEK-AID® Computer and Network Support provides world-class IT consulting services and specializes in customized network design and support, computer repairs, installations, updates, and maintenance for homes and small to midsized businesses. GEEK-AID®'s team of experts is comprised of top specialists in different areas of IT services, serving clients on-site and remotely for Macs, PCs and all your connected devices, including new ones that are part of the ever-expanding IoT. They can answer all your IT questions, from “Do I need a VPN?” to “When do I need to upgrade my computer hardware?” More importantly, when your home or business computer and other devices go down, they will perform on-site computer repairs if required. And the GEEK-AID® team doesn't clock out at five o'clock on Friday. Instead, they are available to you 24/7, remotely or in person, to ensure your computers, network and data stay up-to-date, healthy and secure. As your business grows, expands its network and adds more devices such as smart controls, smart devices, wireless access and remote access, your network's cybercrime vulnerability and need for cyber security will grow, too. So, in addition to maintaining the hardware, software and security, employee training and regular IT support should be ongoing, including learning how to access the most helpful features your connected devices can offer.
Call (877) GEEK-AID (877-433-5243) to discuss all the ways they can maintain and secure the privacy of all your devices and computer systems.